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PLoS Biol. 2015 Nov 10;13(11):e1002295. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1002295. eCollection 2015.

Public Data Archiving in Ecology and Evolution: How Well Are We Doing?

Author information

1
Division of Evolution, Ecology and Genetics, Research School of Biology, The Australian National University, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia.
2
Éco-Éthologie, Institut de Biologie, Université de Neuchâtel, Neuchâtel, Switzerland.
3
Institute of Evolutionary Biology, School of Biological Sciences, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom.
4
Department of Biological Sciences, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia.

Abstract

Policies that mandate public data archiving (PDA) successfully increase accessibility to data underlying scientific publications. However, is the data quality sufficient to allow reuse and reanalysis? We surveyed 100 datasets associated with nonmolecular studies in journals that commonly publish ecological and evolutionary research and have a strong PDA policy. Out of these datasets, 56% were incomplete, and 64% were archived in a way that partially or entirely prevented reuse. We suggest that cultural shifts facilitating clearer benefits to authors are necessary to achieve high-quality PDA and highlight key guidelines to help authors increase their data's reuse potential and compliance with journal data policies.

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PMID:
26556502
PMCID:
PMC4640582
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pbio.1002295
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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